Americans are mad about Jews
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Americans are mad about Jews

Pew survey shows Muslims, atheists fare poorly; Republicans rank members of the tribe higher than Democrats do

Marissa Newman is The Times of Israel political correspondent.

Scarlett Johansson (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore CC BY-SA)
Scarlett Johansson (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore CC BY-SA)

With global anti-Semitism on the rise, American Jews can take heart — a Pew survey on US attitudes toward different faiths published Wednesday reveals that US citizens are unabashedly fond of the tribe, more so than any other religious group.

Asked to rate faith groups on a “feeling thermometer” from 1-100, with the higher number indicating “warmness,” 3,217 respondents placed Jews first, with an average rating of 63, beating out Catholics (62) and evangelical Christians (61) by a narrow margin.

The Jewish rating does not budge when Jewish respondents are factored out of the average.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, atheists and Muslims receive the lowest ratings, at 41 and 40 respectively.

Among all groups, fellow members rate their own religious affiliation more highly than others — but Jews enjoy the highest self-regard, with an 89 rating (atheists rate themselves at 82, white evangelicals rate evangelical Christians at 82, and Catholics give themselves an 80).

Meanwhile, evangelicals view Jews highly (69), but the feeling is hardly reciprocated, with Jews granting evangelicals a cool 34.

Politically, both Republicans and Democrats are partial to Jews, but — perhaps surprisingly — the former ranks Jews higher than the latter (67 vs. 62). However, overall, for Democrats, Jews receive the highest rating among all religious groups, while for Republicans, Jews come in second place after evangelicals.

Republicans also view Muslims with greater dislike than Democrats (33 vs. 44)

Older Americans above the age of 65 rate Jews more positively (65) than their younger counterparts, but tend to view Muslims more negatively (32) than younger people. Whites overall provided the most positive rating of Jews (66), but among blacks and Hispanics, the feelings for Jews were fairly positive across the board (58 for both).

Some 61% of participants know someone who is Jewish — and those that do offered a higher ranking than those who do not (69 compared to 55).

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